Well, I’ve been afraid of changing
Cause I’ve built my life around you.
But time makes you bolder,
Children get older,
And I’m getting older too…
Fleetwood Mac, “Landslide”
I’m facing nostalgia tonight, confronted with thoughts and memories and emotions that I know are better left unspoken, in the past. A planned weekend trip up to my alma matter, a phone call from my grandmother, an acquaintance’s tweet about a familiar place, reminding me of summer friendships, relationships, blossoming in a grove…Simple words and phrases and pictures and places are calling me back to another time, an easier time, and all I can think is…
I’m not ready for this.
I’m not ready to miss things again, to long for something that I can no longer have. I’m ready to move on, move forward, experience something new and exciting and see where my life will take me.
And yet these conflicting emotions are holding me back, stuck between now and then and there, beyond.
I miss things. I miss things that are gone from my life either by force or by choice but never by my want.
I miss the woman my grandmother used to be, before my grandpa died. Strong-willed, a fighter, that world traveler, that independent spirit that I always so admired, that I would be proud to emulate.
I miss easy talks hanging out on the back patio with someone I used to call my best friend. I don’t miss the person — I don’t know him anymore — but I miss the comfort, the ease, the connection that hung between us.
I miss my dogs…My dogs that passed away a few short years ago, so quickly, too soon, and I remember how I wasn’t ready then.
But as I write this I hear Riley howl in happiness downstairs, and I realize now I have him, I love him. And I realize that maybe I’m a lucky one after all. Because maybe these changes bring more good things in your life. Someone leaves and another enters and you have another chance to love new, love more. Love again.
The pain I felt when my dogs died, when my grandparents died, was unlike anything I had ever known. And I realize that maybe that’s why I’ve always been so resistant to change, why I’ve always feared it…Why I’ve always fought so hard to hold onto what I have, never quite willing to let go.
Because I wasn’t ever ready for it.
In life, maybe you never really are.
These things, these people, these memories and experiences are such a huge part of me. So I try to hold onto them, sometimes desperately, because I want them to be a part of my life, because by being a part of my life, they are, in some small way, a part of me.
I’m always going to miss things. That’s part of living and loving and feeling sometimes too deeply. But I would rather feel deeply for something than not at all.
I don’t know if I’ll ever be ready for the changes that are taking place around me every day. I don’t know if I’ll ever not miss what once was.
But I do know that I have a different horizon to look towards now. I do know that there are more people to meet, more experiences to share, more memories to make.
And I’m ready for that.